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Report claims many fleets still aren't focussed on disposals

Date: 03 September 2010   |   Author: Rupert Saunders

Many business car operators and some leasing companies are still not focussing strongly enough on the disposal side of their business, according to Professor Peter Cooke, professor of automotive management at the University of Buckingham.

Professor Cooke believes the management of used car sales is "one of the most critical issues" affecting fleet operators, especially as we continue in a tough economic climate.

"The biggest message I have for fleet operators is 'get the spec right'," said Cooke. "You need to specify the new vehicle to make it attractive as a used vehicle. That focus has gone away in the good times.

"We know well-specified cars will sell quickly and at a good price; so think carefully about options."

Cooke claimed there was evidence that small and medium operators were especially vulnerable.

"Yes, the big boys do it, but not all the small and medium players do," he said. "These issues are going to become more important as vehicle choices widens."

Cooke was speaking at the launch of the BCA Used Car Market Report 2010. This revealed that used car values continue to climb and the total used car market last year was worth £6.2bn more than the new car market.

A BCA spokesman said the auction house was now seeing a return to more seasonal norms after the wild fluctuations in values last year. But he warned that consumer confidence continued to be an issue.

"We need to get the churn back into the market," he said. "Are people confident enough to buy and sell? If we can start churning cars again, then the whole market starts to move."

* The BCA Used Car Market Report 2010 is available as a download from at a price of £30